Some fancy, some divey, all delicious.
It seems everyone is a restaurant expert these days, from your overly opinionated office mate to anonymous Yelpers with an axe to grind. But if there’s one group that truly knows how to pick a good place, it’s a chef.
Where do the best professional cooks go to eat in New York when they’re not doing it as part of their job?
It turns out, they go everywhere: to after-hours joints in Little Tokyo, cozy neighborhood spots for date night, and the hottest dining rooms in midtown.
Café Luxembourg has been an art deco escape on the Upper West Side since the 1980s. Craig Koketsu of Quality Meats goes there on nights off with his wife. “I am hard-pressed to recall an experience that is as comforting and enjoyable as any of my frequent dinners at Cafe Luxembourg, a few blocks from my apartment,” says Koketsu. His go-to meal is a Boulevardier (shaken not stirred) with mixed green salads (“I know, you’re yawning, but their shallot vinaigrette is delicious”) and either a Luxemburger medium-rare with Cheddar, extra lettuce and tomato, and fries or a tuna burger medium-rare with extra lettuce, tomato and wasabi mayo. Favorite dish: Harry’s Hot Fudge Sundae (“the toasted almonds are truly incredible”). 200 W. 70th St.